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IELTS Speaking Test Format

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The IELTS speaking test takes the form of a one-to-one interview. There are three parts to the speaking test. These allow you to demonstrate your spoken English skills through a number of tasks. The tasks are designed so that you can use range of language on a variety of topics. The whole interview takes between 11 and 14 minutes. Here is an overview of the speaking test format showing the three parts and the approximate timing of each.

PART 1 IN TRODUCTION AND INTERVIEW (4-5 MINUTES) : You will have the chance to speak on familiar topics. The examiner will ask you a number of straightforward questions about yourself and about familiar topics, and you should find these easy to answer. This is an opportunity to overcome any nerves and demonstrate your basic fluency.

PART 2 Short Talk (3-4 MINUTES) : You will be asked to talk for 1 or 2 minutes on a topicchosen by the examiner. You will have a minute to prepare and then you will have to speak on the topic without stopping. The topic will be based on your personal experiences and feelings, so your talk should be lively and interesting.

PART 3 TWO-WAY Discussion (4-5 MINUTES) : You will be asked more abstract questions, broadly linked to the topic introduced in part 2, and you will be encouraged to discuss these more fully. This is where you can demonstrate control of language, your ability to express abstract ideas, and to support your opinions appropriately. You should aim to give longer replies than you did do the part 1 question.

The Examiner’s role : IELTS examiners have been specially trained to rate spoken English on the IELTS sale. They will be clear and encouraging so that you can do your best on the day of the test. They know that you may be nervous but they can only assess what they hear, so they will expect you to speak up and to produce plenty of language.

The examiners rate your language on scale of 1-9 in four broad areas: fluency, vocabulary, grammar and accuracy, and pronunciation.

THE CANDIDATE’S ROLE : It is important that you listen carefully to what you are asked and provide full and extended answers to the questions. However, you must stick to the topic and avoid rehearsed language or answers which do not relate to the questions.


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